On the edge of the woods there was still light enough to see, but with each step forward the trees and bushes and vines and thorns crept closer, eventually shutting him within its domain of darkness. He couldn’t see his hand in front of his face. Now he stood at a wall of brambled mess—branches intertwined into a thick chain-link fence. It wasn’t his first choice to walk through this part of the park, but it would cut a couple of miles off his trip. Now he must step into this unknown mess and walk through to the other side.
He thrust one foot out and crashed forward as far as he could. He lifted the other leg to begin another stomp of destruction, but before he could send it through the undergrowth, something let out a scream. A deathly, primordial, feline scream. Fear shot through every fiber of his body, freezing him in place. Is it a wildcat? A mountain lion? It’s definitely something foreign and dangerous.
As he stood, he wondered, “How did I get here?” Simple: he walked. He had been at a friend’s house, stayed too late, and didn’t have a ride home. He didn’t want to call his parents and wake them, so he started walking. His arrival to this moment was no accident. Walking is a slow, plodding, methodical process of putting one foot in front of another to move from one place to another. You never arrive somewhere by accident by walking: it’s the steady accumulation of a thousand small choices.
Ephesians 2:10 says, “We are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand, that we should walk in them.” How you walk, where you walk, and with whom you walk determines how you live. Because walking is like living: thousands of small choices adding up over time to take you where you are.
Ephesians 2:1-10 contrasts two ways to walk. In verses 1-3 it says you once walked in “trespasses and sins… following the course of the world… carrying out the desires of the body and the mind.” Not a pretty picture. But verse 10 says those who are in Christ Jesus will walk in good works. Our purposes and decisions will be in the direction that honors God.
He strained to listen for the movement of whatever creature was preparing to pounce,but all he could hear was the pulse beat of a runaway train pounding in his ears. He waited for what seemed hours. There were no more screams, no more noise. And so he took that next step into the darkness, and then another, and eventually the forest loosened its grip and allowed in a sliver of moonlight. He kept walking, kept taking steps, and passed through and made it home.
How does someone ‘walk’ in good works?
Father, thank you for creating us to walk in good works. Help us to take the small steps forward as we seek to follow you by faith. We believe that you are guiding us with each movement forward to the place you want us to be. Help us to listen to your direction and guidance as we take each step of faith.